Diane P. Wood Named Director Designate of The American Law Institute

Diane P. Wood Named Director Designate of  The American Law Institute

PHILADELPHIA — The American Law Institute’s Council today announced the appointment of  Diane P. Wood, Senior Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, as Director Designate. Judge Wood will succeed Richard L. Revesz, who stepped down to take on the role of Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, and will be the first woman to hold this position at the Institute.  She will assume the role of Director in May 2023.

“We are so pleased that Diane Wood will be our new Director and so confident in our future under her leadership,” said ALI President David F. Levi.  “Diane has had a distinguished and storied career committed to the rule of law. From academia to private practice to government service to her time on the court, she is a brilliant legal thinker and has made her mark on many fields, including antitrust and international law.  She is also a skillful leader and trusted colleague. She has been a forceful and important contributor to the work of the ALI through her membership on the ALI’s Council for many years.  As we enter our second century, we are so fortunate to be able to work with her as ALI Director.”

Judge Wood was recommended to the ALI’s Executive Committee by its Nominating Committee, chaired by Jeffrey S. Sutton, Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit.

“The ALI Director plays a critical role at The American Law Institute,” said Chief Judge Sutton. “ALI’s Director works closely with the Council to identify and recommend Institute projects, to recruit distinguished Reporters for those projects, and to oversee the intellectual output of the ALI. Diane is the ideal choice to fulfill each of these roles. On the court, she is known as a brilliant mind, a consensus builder, and a trailblazer. I am thrilled to see her elected as ALI’s next Director.”

Judge Wood was appointed to the Seventh Circuit in 1995, and served as its Chief Judge from 2013 to 2020.  She is also a Senior Lecturer in Law at the University of Chicago Law School, where she teaches in the areas of federal civil procedure, antitrust law, and international trade and business.

Before her appointment to the bench, Judge Wood was the Harold J. and Marion F. Green Professor of International Legal Studies at the University of Chicago Law School. She also served for two years as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, with responsibility for the Division’s international, appellate, and legal policy matters. In 2015, Judge Wood received the U.S. Department of Justice’s 2015 John S. Sherman Award – the department’s highest antitrust honor.

“I am deeply honored to have been chosen as the seventh Director of The American Law Institute,” said Judge Wood. “In my time as a member of the ALI, I have worked with several of the previous directors. All of them were remarkable, and I have especially enjoyed working with Ricky for the last nine years.  I recognize that all of ALI’s Directors have set a very high standard. Having been an ALI member and served on its Council, I have admired the work of the ALI, its members, and its leaders for many years. The work of the ALI in simplifying and restating the law is as important today as it was in 1923 when the Institute was founded.  By making the law more coherent and knowable, the ALI seeks to promote the rule of law in this country and beyond.  We also bring to bear the perspective of the academy, the judiciary, and the practicing bar on some of the toughest and most consequential legal issues our country faces.  It is a great privilege for me to become Director as the ALI looks forward to its next 100 years of service to the legal system.”

Elected to ALI in 1990 and to the ALI Council in 2003, Judge Wood has been an influential and active participant in the Institute’s work and its leadership. She has served as an Adviser to Restatement of the Law, The Law of American Indians (Published 2022); Restatement of the Law Fourth, The Foreign Relations Law of the United States – Jurisdiction (Published 2018); Legal and Economic Principles of World Trade Law (Published 2012); Principles of the Law of Aggregate Litigation (Published 2010); and as U.S. Adviser to Transnational Rules of Civil Procedure (Published 2007). She also served on the Members Consultative Group for Complex Litigation: Statutory Recommendations and Analysis (Published 1994).

As an elected member of the ALI Council, Judge Wood currently serves on the Special Committee on ALI’s 100th Anniversary, through which she played an instrumental role in organizing the forthcoming book chronicling ALI’s history. She also chairs the ALI Early Career Scholars Medal Committee. She was a member of ALI’s Nominating Committee from 2004 to 2016, serving as its chair from 2011 to 2016, and she served on ALI’s Executive Committee from 2012 to 2018.

In addition to her service to ALI, Judge Wood serves on the Board of the American Bar Foundation. She is a former Board member of the Constitutional Rights Foundation Chicago, which was an organization devoted to teaching elementary and secondary school students about the U.S. legal system. From 2007 to 2013, she served as a member of the Judicial Conference’s Standing Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure, and from 2004 to 2007 she was a member of the Judicial Conference’s Committee on International Legal Relations. Wood is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, whose Council she chaired from 2014 to 2022, and where she served as a member of the Commissions on the Humanities and Social Sciences, Languages, and Democratic Citizenship.

She received her B.A. and her J.D. from the University of Texas at Austin. After law school, she clerked for Judge Irving L. Goldberg of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and for Associate Justice Harry A. Blackmun of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Judge Wood will continue as a judicial officer.  Consistent with the judicial ethics rules, she will not receive compensation from the ALI or participate in Institute fundraising.

*  *  *

About The American Law Institute

The American Law Institute is the leading independent organization in the United States producing scholarly work to clarify, modernize, and improve the law. The ALI drafts, discusses, revises, and publishes Restatements of the Law, Model Codes, and Principles of Law that are enormously influential in the courts and legislatures, as well as in legal scholarship and education.

By participating in the Institute’s work, its distinguished members have the opportunity to influence the development of the law in both existing and emerging areas, to work with other eminent lawyers, judges, and academics, to give back to a profession to which they are deeply dedicated, and to contribute to the public good.

For more information about The American Law Institute, visit

Featured Members